A pioneer and legend

The Philadelphia building trades mourn the loss of Samuel Staten Sr., 80, the former business manager of Laborers Local 332, former secretary-treasurer of the Laborers' District Council of the Metropolitan Area of Philadelphia and Vicinity, and a pioneer of the city's labor community.

Staten was a legend in the labor and civic communities. He was more than a mentor; he was an inspiration to me and countless other labor leaders in this city. His courage, leadership, and vision helped make Philadelphia one of the nation's great union towns.

For Staten, the labor movement was more than a job; it was a way of life. His contributions to the labor movement and to workers' rights were immeasurable. One of our last conversations was about institutionalizing pre-apprenticeship programs to create employment opportunities for all Philadelphians.

On behalf of all members of the Philadelphia building trades, we send our deepest condolences to the Staten family.

|John J. Dougherty, business manager, Philadelphia Building and Construction Trades Council, Philadelphia